The shortlist for this year's Waterstones Book of the Year is out - and it features four landmark Penguin Random House UK titles.

Looking to find the best overall book of the past year, the list features an eclectic range of titles - from Philip Pullman's heroic return to the world of His Dark Materials in La Belle Sauvage, to Yannis Varoufakis' use of personal stories and famous myths to explain the power of economics in Talking to My Daughter About the Economy

Read on to find out all about our four brilliant shortlistees...


The Lost Words

Robert Macfarlane and Jackie Morris

Only released last month by Hamish Hamilton, The Lost Words has become an instant classic. It sees Landmarks author Robert Macfarlane and acclaimed artist & author Jackie Morris team up to look at the words of the natural world which are fast disappearing from children's lives. From dandelion to bramble to acorn - the book captures the irreplaceable magic of language and nature for all ages.

Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls

Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo

Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls has been a huge success for Particular Books and authors Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo throughout 2017, as a true celebration of the heroines who definitely don't need rescuing. Through the beautifully-illustrated stories of 100 heroic women - from Elizabeth I to Serena Williams to Malala - the book succeeds in redressing the lack of female role models in children's literature, in collaboration with sixty phenomenal female artists. 

Talking to My Daughter About the Economy

Yanis Varoufakis

In Talking to My Daughter About the Economy, Bodley Head author and world-famous economist Yanis Varoufakis sets out to answer his daughter Xenia's deceptively simple question - 'Why is there so much inequality?'

Through memories of her childhood and a variety of well-known tales - from Oedipus to The Matrix - Varoufakis explains everything you need to know to understand the power and drama of economics.

La Belle Sauvage: The Book of Dust Volume One

Phillip Pullman

Last but very much not least, we have one of the most anticipated books of the year. Phillip Pullman's return to the world of His Dark Materials, published by Penguin Random House Children's and David Fickling Books, features the new heroic combo of eleven-year-old Malcolm Polstead and his dæmon Asta - who happen to come across a baby by the name of Lyra Belacqua...

Also making the shortlist are George Saunders' Booker Prize-winning Lincoln in the Bardo (Bloomsbury), Mr Lear: A Life of Art and Nonsense by Jenny Uglow (Faber & Faber) and Frances Hardinge's A Skinful of Shadows (Macmillan). You can now view and find out more about the full shortlist on the Waterstones website

Best of luck to all of our authors and publishing teams nominated.

Press Enquiries

For more information on this story please get in touch via our media contacts.

Read more

We use cookies on this site to enable certain parts of the site to function and to collect information about your use of the site so that we can improve our visitors’ experience.

For more on our cookies and changing your settings click here

Strictly Necessary


Preferences & Features

Targeting / Advertising